No baby penises allowed

Pluck
Kim Schomburg

My buddy, Allison, and her son, who’s about Teddy’s age, lives in Hyde Park. Allison and I were pregnancy buddies, meeting through a friend when we were just in our first trimester, and since then, we’ve hung out nearly once a week, with babies both in utero and out. 

Yesterday, we decided to take the little guys to the Washington Park pool, which has a great shallow end and is just a beautiful pool all around. 

There were two sessions back to back – family swim and female swim – and we got there a bit late for family swim, so we figured we’d stay on into female.

But we were stopped by “Poochie,” a young Chicago Park District employee with frosty eye shadow and a rhinestone necklace bearing her nickname. 

“Those babies can’t come in. They’re boys,” she said, stone-faced.

Both of us stared at her incredulously. Allison reminded her that she had been there every day this week with her son, and had even spoke to the manager about how it was okay for her 5 month-old son to participate in female swim. He would not be doing any cannon balls or cat calling the young ladies. 

Poochie smacked her lips and gave us a disapproving look. “Fine,” she said. 

Allison and I started cracking up. Was this lady really serious? 

I wanted to tell her and her manager that it’s actually illegal to tell us that we can’t bring our babies in. Illinois laws on breastfeeding allow an infant to be anywhere his or her mother is allowed to be.

But it was Sunday and we were just hanging out at the pool with the babes. I couldn’t bring myself to get all righteous on such a beautiful day. 

However, I will be keeping my eye out for some baby girl swimsuits at the thrift store. Before the pool closes on labor day, we want to dress the boys up in them just to see if Poochie makes a face. I’ll be looking for something pink with copious ruffles.

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